Securities Industry Commentator by Bill Singer Esq

May 3, 2018

Maple Heights man indicted for robbing Cleveland bank one day after getting out of prison for robbing the same bank (DOJ Press Release)
Markiko Sonnie Lewis robbed the Key Bank at 15000 St. Clair Ave. on April 12 of about $1,044. Lewis was released from prison the day before the robbery, and, in fact, he had been incarcerated for previously robbing the same bank. Lewis was indicted in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio on one count of bank robbery. I'm gonna bet that Lewis' favorite film is Groundhog Day.

SEC Charges North Carolina-Based Microcap Company, its CEO, and Others in Scheme to Defraud Investors (SEC Litigation Release No. 24126)
In a Complaint filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, the SEC alleged that that Revolutionary Concepts, Inc. (REVO) and its CEO/director, Solomon RC Ali (also known as Richard M. Carter), engaged in transactions that involved persons with close, but undisclosed, relationships to Ali, and then made false and misleading statements about the transactions in press releases and public filings with the SEC. READ the Full Text Complaint Also, the 
Complaint alleges that Rainco Industries, Inc. and Nicole C. Singletary aided and abetted the fraud. Further, the Complaint alleges that Ali, Rainco, Singletary, and attorney Earnest H. (Woody) DeLong, Jr. violated beneficial ownership reporting requirements of the federal securities laws. Finally, the Complaint alleges that Ali is liable for antifraud and reporting violations by microcap public company Universal Bioenergy, Inc. (UBRG). Subject to court approval, REVO, Rainco, Singletary, and DeLong have agreed to settle but  litigation against Ali is ongoing. REVO, Rainco, Singletary, and DeLong consented to final judgments, without admitting or denying the allegations. Each of the settling defendants has agreed to pay $25,000 civil penalties. In addition, REVO consented to permanent injunctions from future violations of Section 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933, Sections 10(b) and 13(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rules 10b-5, 12b-20, 13a-1, 13a-11, and 13a-13 thereunder. Rainco and Singletary each consented to permanent injunctions from future violations of Section 17(a) of the Securities Act, Sections 10(b) and 13(d) of the Exchange Act, and Rules 10b-5 and 13d-1 thereunder; a five-year penny stock bar; and, as to Singletary, a five-year officer and director bar. DeLong consented to permanent injunctions from future violations of Sections 13(d) and 16(a) of the Exchange Act and Rules 13d-1 and 16a-3 thereunder; a five-year penny stock bar; and, a five-year officer and director bar. Subject to court approval of the settlement, DeLong consented to the entry of an order, without admitting or denying the findings, suspending him from appearing and practicing before the SEC as an attorney.

South Florida Stock Promoters Charged with Securities Fraud in Relation to Pump and Dump Stock Manipulation Scheme  (DOJ Press Release)
Eddy Ubaldo Marin (a convicted felon) was charged by a criminal information  in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida with one count of securities fraud. Shane R. Spierdowis was charged by separate criminal information with one count of conspiracy to commit securities fraud. The defendants were named in connection with an alleged $1 million pump and dump securities fraud scheme involving the shares of Valentine Beauty, Inc. ("VLBI"), a beauty supply company that marketed its products via informercials. Prosecutors alleged that Marin and other accomplices obtained a controlling interest in VLBI stock by issuing shares to certain third parties, including Green Tree Capital, Inc., a company controlled by Marin. Thereafter, the shares were transferred into accounts controlled by Spierdowis and other co-conspirators.  Marin, Spierdowis and others allegedly arranged for VLBI to issue press releases, while also using internet marketing and penny stock newsletters to tout VLBI stock. Marketing newsletters and other email marketing were used to artificially increase the trading volume and price of VLBI shares, so that Marin, Spierdowis and their co-conspirators could sell about $1 million worth of shares to the investing public. Federal prosecutors allege that while incarcerated in federal prison, Marin was visited by Spierdowis  and during these visits the defendants coordinated the sale of VLBI shares and discussed activities related to other stocks. A parallel civil enforcement action was filed by the SEC against Marin and Spierdowis. See "Two South Florida Men Barred From Penny Stock Offerings For Engaging In a Microcap Pump-and-Dump Scheme" (SEC Litigation Release No. 24127) 
Marin and Spierdowis agreed to settle the SEC's charges and be barred from the penny stock industry. The settlement with the SEC, which is subject to court approval, also permanently enjoins Marin and Spierdowis from violating the charged provisions of the federal securities laws and provides that the court will decide the amounts of disgorgement, interest, and civil penalties at a later date.

Pro Se Employee Eviscerated In FINRA Employment Expungement Arbitration ( Blog)
 May 3, 2018
Mind your manners! Listen up everyone: Wall Street is no longer a rough and tumble, winner-takes-all place. Proper etiquette will now be observed. You gentleman and ladies will say "please," "thank you," and "excuse me." You will always be polite to everyone at all times. Think this is a joke? Well, perhaps you might read today's Blog article about a recent FINRA arbitration and, when you're finished, say "thank you" to that nice man Mr. Singer. 

Principal of $42 Million Ponzi-Like Scheme Sentenced To 33 Months' Imprisonment (SEC Litigation Release No. 24128)
On October 29, 2014, Mark Feathers was indicted United States District Court for Northern District of California on seventeen counts of securities fraud and twelve counts of mail fraud in connection with Feathers' management and operation of Small Business Capital and the funds it managed. On December 20, 2017, Feathers pled guilty to one count of mail fraud. The criminal charges arose from the same conduct alleged in a 2012 action brought by the SEC that alleged over 400 investors were snared in a Ponzi-like scheme involving promises that profits from mortgage investments would yield annual returns of 7.5 percent or more. On August 16, 2013, the SEC obtained summary judgment against Feathers and on November 6, 2013, the court entered a final judgment against Feathers, permanently enjoining him from violating Section 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5 thereunder, and ordered him to pay disgorgement in the amount of $7,782,961 and a $10,000 civil penalty. On March 7, 2018, Feathers was sentenced to 33 months imprisonment, to be followed by three years of supervised release, and the payment of restitution in the amount of $5,724,767.